Lacto Fermented Sauerkraut

This recipe belongs to my wonderful mother!  She is the genius behind the best sauerkraut I have ever had.  My favorite part about this recipe is that it uses lacto fermentation as opposed to a vinegar pickling.  Lacto fermentation is a little trickier, but much healthier as it is loaded with good probiotics (like yogurt) and good bacteria that help promote gut health.

A few key things to know before we get into the recipe: 1. don’t use any metal when making lacto fermented anything, it can react with the acid and end up tasting bad. No metal bowls or spoons, I used a glass bowl and a wooden spoon. 2. Don’t use salt with iodine or anti-caking agents in them, it can prevent/kill the fermentation process altogether, I used sea salt. 3. Make sure to use filtered water (if you end up needing it) for the same reason as the salt, chlorine and other water additives can slow down or stop the natural fermentation. 4. You always want your sauerkraut submerged in liquid, it keeps it crisp and fresh. If you notice your sauerkraut looking dry on the top as it ferments add a few tablespoons of lightly salted water to the top until it covers all the cabbage.

Sauerkraut is one of my favorite foods!! I eat it with breakfast all the time and I basically can’t eat hotdogs without it anymore! What things would you put sour sauerkraut on?

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Sauerkraut

  • 1 medium head of cabbage

  • 1 medium onion

  • 4-5 cloves Garlic

  • 1 ½ tablespoon Sea Salt

Using a round cutter cut out 2 circles from larger outer leaves of cabbage, set aside. Thinly slice the rest of the cabbage and place in a non metallic bowl. Add salt and stir using a wooden spoon till salt is all mixed in, set aside to rest for about 10 min. to allow salt to draw out moisture. Chop garlic and onion finely, add to cabbage and stir together. Using a clean and dry quart mason jar, fill with cabbage mixture about 1/3 of the way full and pack down using a blender tamper, make sure not to overly smash and just gently compact the cabbage (you want to begin to pull more juice out of the cabbage).  Fill jar another 1/3 and pack down again, repeat till jar is full, leaving 1 ½ inch head clearance at the top. Place your circle cut leaf on top and depending on juiciness add a little salt water to the top just till cabbage is covered. Screw on lid. Repeat with second jar.  Place jars on a towel (for possible leakage) on counter top, let sit at room temp (about 70 degrees) for 10 days. In the winter and colder temperatures it will take up to 2 weeks and in the summer when it’s warmer the time will be shorter. If you are not sure if it’s done just taste it, when it sours to your liking its done. Once it’s done it will continue to sour at a very slow rate in the refrigerator and as long as it is submerged in its liquid it can last up to 10 years!!! 

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Halibut Fish Tacos With Cilantro Avocado Sauce

I am a sucker for anything in a corn tortilla, but especially fish!  Fresh caught halibut lightly pan fried with crunchy cabbage, cilantro and onions, crisp radishes, sriracha aioli and cilantro avocado sauce makes this taco extra delicious.  I came up with this recipe after living in San Diego and tasting some of the best fish tacos of my life! I was instantly inspired, and came up with my own version of street tacos, after a few years of tweaking I have decided that this recipe is very nearly as good as the fantastic tacos I had in San Diego.

 

This fish taco recipe is super simple to make and you can easily substitute the halibut for cod, or any other white fish you enjoy. Just keep in mind cooking times will be slightly different for each fish.  Halibut is a dense and meaty fish that is very sturdy when cooing, it’s fairly easy to work with and has excellent flavor making it perfect for tacos! A few tips for cooing halibut are:  Make sure your pan is not too hot. I cook most fish at a lower temperature than other proteins, mostly because fish is very delicate and fast cooking; a rule of thumb would be watch the color: nothing darker than a light golden color on the batter is perfect.  To keep the fish crispy, place your cooked fish on a wire cooling rack for service.  The fish will continue to steam and if it’s on a plate the breading will likely become soggy form contact with the plate. Just make sure to serve it quickly as it will cool fast.

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Most of the prep for this recipe can be done ahead of time:

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Cilantro Avocado Sauce

  • 1 Avocado
  • Juice of 1 Lime
  • 1 Cup Sour Cream
  • 1 Clove Garlic (chopped)
  • ½ Cup Lightly Packed Cilantro
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste

In a food processor blend avocado and lime juice till smooth. Add in sour cream, garlic and cilantro, blend till cilantro is chopped and well incorporated. Add salt and pepper and taste for seasoning. Makes about 2 cups of sauce and will keep refrigerated for up to a week.

 

Sriracha Aioli

  • 1 Cup Mayo
  • 1 Clove Garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons sriracha Sauce
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a mason jar and mix thoroughly. Makes about 1 cup sauce (I usually double it) keep refrigerated for up to a month.

 

Halibut Fish Tacos

Breading: 

  • 1 lb Halibut
  • 1 Clove Garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Lime Juice
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 4 Tablespoons Corn Starch

Tacos:

  • ¼  Head of Cabbage (thinly sliced)
  • ¼ Cup Cilantro
  • ½ Onion (chopped)
  • 2 Radishes (thinly sliced)
  • 6-8 Corn tortillas
  • 1 lime for squeezing
  • 1-2 Tablespoon olive oil for cooking

Thinly slice cabbage and radishes. Chop onion and cilantro, in a bowl combine the onions and cilantro. Set aside. Warm tortillas in a pan or in the oven wrapped in tinfoil. (keep warm) Clean and portion fish into this slices about ½” thick, place in a bowl and add chopped garlic, salt, pepper and lime juice. Mix to coat fish in seasoning. Add in the egg and corn starch, mix gently with hands until a light batter forms around the fish. If the batter is to thick or thin add a tablespoon more of cornstarch or a drizzle of water according to need.  In a cast iron pan heated with olive oil to medium heat cook fish in two additions for about 3-4 min on each side being careful not to over crowd the pan. Remove to cooling rack and cook second addition of fish.

To assemble tacos place a piece of fish on a warmed tortilla, top with cabbage, cilantro onion mixture and radishes. Top with cilantro avocado sauce and sriratcha aioli, squeeze with lime juice and ENJOY!